The Passing of A Friend - Things w/ Amir Motlagh Ep10

Was not going to do one of these this week, but then I figured that, knowing Chris, he would have been like, "fuck you dude, do one of these on me!" 

I just pulled up our last text message, in which he states that I owe him a Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles dinner. I can't seem to recall why?

Still working out some audio drop-outs, but I think I figured that out. If you're interested in getting your weekly (bi-weekly) dose of these, please subscribe. 

Christopher Ad Castillo:

Celso Ad. Castillo:

MIRS video we co-directed on the set of his film LosAngeles7:

RIP Christopher Ad. Castillo

First teaser trailer goes live for our latest feature project MAN

Coming sometime in 2018 is my latest feature film, MAN. This is the first available teaser for the project. We are currently creating our release schedule though I have no estimates other than "sometime, 2018". If you'll make some noise about it, the sooner it will find its way. 

The film has yet to world premiere (working on securing dates/venue) although it has won its first award a little over a month ago at a private festival event (CICFF). 

This is 1/3 of the THREE MARKS, TOO MANY SIGNALS trilogy, which features the already released 2016 project, CANYON, and the forthcoming feature film, THREE WORLDS (also a 2018 release).

alternatively, on vimeo if you prefer:

And so I Wrote Something to be Read

Not only do you get a 2D cartoon representation of me, you also get some quotable gems I've probably (wisely) moved away from.

Cartoon Amir.

Cartoon Amir.

In all honestly, this is a cool film series published by FOCAL PRESS with some interesting, and talented(this word is meaningless in many ways, but not always) filmmakers.

I however, did not reread this after it was sent 6 months ago to be published, because, what is the point of revising archived opinion?

With that said, can it possible be the best thing I've ever written? Not sure. 

Enjoy, share and let me know your thoughts.


creatives in a world of more creatives....

It's hard to imagine sustaining the creative class as the numbers inflate and the capital diminishes.  But, we are also in the throws of the chopped hierarchical tree, in which a select few where given the whole share of resources and attention for their creative endeavors.

Length, size, genre, mediums, fidelity, production values are just some of the things that seem to matter less and less, as ultimately, attention becomes the trophy creatives seek, sometimes in the most desperate ways.

The death of the critical class is inevitable because the distribution of the voice is constant. An opinion is an opinion after all, and control of content doesn't exist.  What you ultimately get is the good with the bad.  Then this naturally follows, "what is good and what is bad". Nobody gets to decide for you anymore. 

The Filmmakers Paradigm

Filmmaking is a stressful form.  Waiting is the norm.  No matter how enthusiastic, prepared and persistent you are, there are times where you must wait.

But, there is also another option.  The DIY route; birthed from a punk rock attitude, great to relieve temporary anxiety, or, in some cases, to reign over control and defeat anxiety.  To feel in charge, less frustrated and more enabled.  To be what seemed denied to you in world of gatekeeping foundations.

However, the ceiling is limited in height.  Not always, but more so than not.  What is this ceiling?  Audience, scope, professionalism, hierarchy, name talent, etc, etc.  Of course, none of these matter if your art beckons you to create what you need.

In my eyes, both are valid.  It's the execution of either form that matters.  But, what also matters is your piece of mind.  And if you can find it with no money, then do it.

But, filmmaking takes time.  Lots of time.  So, just know that the time you take for one thing, takes away from the other thing.  And sometimes, that particular  car chase you have in your mind does not lend itself to DIY.

What do you want?

First impressions "whale does not disappoint" and really, why should it?

The first write up regarding whale, my new feature film over at the DIY Filmmaker blog. Sujewa Ekanyake has been a supporter of my work from the early days, but he has also been some what critical at times (knock. knock.), which is why I am still interested in his impressions (and also for the fact that he has no stakes in this picture whatsoever).

Couple this with the fact that he is one of the loudest and most keen supporters of the DIY scene (and knows it inside and out). For my part in the DIY world, i have always kept the stance that, DIY for me is only a method, or technique of filmmaking. I do not prescribe to the principles necessarily(if there ever was some), and have, in fact been quite uncomfortabe with the scene and labeling in particular. If DIY is void of any craftsmanship, history, technique, acting or not, then i want no part of it. If however, it is a true experiment in form and content, and another way to give voice to an otherwise voiceless group, then by all means necessary(meaning, i'll consider it). The duplicity seems to lie in all the debates thus far. As far as I'm concerned, the underrepresented train of thought has unfortunately gone over everyones head. This shit aint affirmative action. Its pro-action, thats been underrepresented.

Now back to what this website is about anyways, self promotion, so without further ado, a few short excerpts from the longer post regarding whale,

"The acting/non-acting is so flawless Whale appears to be a blend between documentary footage and a foreign/art house project.

"At one point during the movie I thought to myself that this kind of thing must be what most "mumblecore" & other twenty something indie films are after - a direct revelation of their reality/personal experience presented in a way/format that outsiders may be able to connect with - but, whereas most mumblecore movies feel very unrealistic & narrow in the world that they are able to re-create on the screen, Whale feels "more real", oriented more in the general direction of universality & is funny."

"I can very comfortably say that Whale is one of the most exciting & well made indie films I've seen in a while...creating an interesting/reflective image of ethnic & economic diversity in America."

For a reading of the full post, without all the tid bits that i enjoyed the most, go here.